Cosatu’s congress could end on a high note, with police union Popcru pushing for dagga to be legalised.
The proposal was due to come up for debate today when delegates debate resolutions.
Popcru general secretary Nkosinathi Theledi told The Star that by legalising dagga, the police would be freed to focus on fighting more serious crime.
If adopted, said Theledi, the proposal would be forwarded to the SAPS top brass for consideration.
“Whether we like it or not, dagga is being used and it should rather be legalised.
“We are saying it should be regulated … the age limit on who is allowed to use it.
“Research even tells us that there are cases where doctors prescribe dagga for patients with particular ailments.
“If it happens, then this will save police resources – instead of chasing after (dagga sellers and producers), they can look at bigger crime,” said Theledi.
Theledi, who says he does not smoke dagga, said he was initially opposed to the idea, but had been persuaded otherwise by his union.
While the use of dagga may encourage some users to try harder drugs, Theledi said regulation – such as that on alcohol sales – should be enforced.
Legalisation would also “empower the people who produce it and will add to the economy”, according Theledi, stressing it would be up to congress delegates to debate and finalise the issue.
Meanwhile, Cosatu deputy general secretary Bheki Ntshalintshali said that, for the first time, the issue of global warming would feature at the congress.
By Sibusiso Ngalwa